BOSTON -- How has Jhonny Peralta impacted Boston’s season? Let us count the ways.
When Peralta was about to be suspended for 50 games because of his involvement with Biogenesis, it was just before the trading deadline, and Detroit GM David Dombrowski was in need of a shortstop. Hours before the deadline, he entered serious negotiations with Boston GM Ben Cherington, who was trying to make a deal for White Sox pitcher Jake Peavy. Cherington expanded his talks with the White Sox to make it a three-way deal, the Tigers sending the White Sox a player they wanted -- outfielder Avisail Garcia -- the Red Sox sending shortstop Jose Iglesias to the Tigers -- and Peavy coming to Boston.
Peralta’s suspension ended days before the start of the playoffs. He played three games at the end of the regular season, had a huge three-run home run in Game 4 of the ALDS against the Athletics, helping the Tigers to advance to the next round, then had three hits in Game 1 against the Red Sox, driving in the only run in Detroit’s 1-0 win.
Sunday night in Game 2, he singled in his first at-bat, sending Victor Martinez, who had doubled, to third. Alex Avila’s single scored Martinez to give the Tigers a 1-0 lead.
Before the game, Tigers manager Jim Leyland was asked if he had any question in his mind about bringing Peralta back after his suspension.
“That was a decision made by Dave Dombrowski,’’ Leyland said. “That was a decision Dave Dombrowski made. We talked about it. And according to the rules you had to bring him back, and then you had to make a baseball decision whether you wanted to keep him or not, and that was a decision that Dave said that he would make.’’
Leyland was asked if he was comfortable with that decision.
“Like I said,’’ he answered, “that was a decision that Dave made.’’
Red Sox outfielder Jonny Gomes, who represented the team in the pregame interview room, also was asked about Peralta’s participation.
“I don’t make those rules,’’ he said. “With that being said, I’m not going to go head up with Major League Baseball and the union and the rules they make. I follow the rules. I’m not trying to rewrite the rule book. It is what it is.’’